MTB Odyssey Course Description and Maps

FINAL EVENT INFORMATION: We encourage all MTB competitors to download and read the 'MTB Events Program' before race weekend. This contains all the final event information like schedule, course maps, race rules, and more… and is essential reading for competitors. CLICK HERE FOR MORE.




The Otway Odyssey courses have a solid reputation… including some solid hills, some solid single track and provide some solid smiles at the end of the day. If you are up for a challenge that delivers a massive reward, the Otway Odyssey is for you.

Mountain bike riders will be taken on an incredible journey through the mighty Otway forests, past towering tree-ferns, through tall timber forests and along roads and single tracks that will make your eyes water. This is off road riding at its best!

*Looking for the Great Otway Gravel Grind course details? CLICK HERE

Index to information below:


Course description and maps

100km Otway Odyssey

This is the ultimate mountain bike marathon - an heroic mountain bike journey through a range of wild landscapes and cranking single track.

The 2019 100km Odyssey will be held on the same, popular course used since 2015. The 100km course will start and finish in Forrest and provide a stunning mountain bike journey through the Otway Ranges on some of the Australia's best single track.

The course starts and finishes at the Forrest Football Ground and basically does 3 separate loops, returning to the football ground at the 38km, at the 64km point and then at the 100km point and the euphoric finish line.

Each loop takes riders on a variety of tracks and trails that will leave your thighs burning and your face creased with a smile as you take in some of the best trails and riding landscapes the country has to offer.

**CLICK HERE (or MAP pictured) to download 100KM MTB COURSE MAP**

Length: 98km
Total elevation gain / loss: 2350m

  • Leg 1 (Start - Hayden Tk - Thompsons Tk - Footy Ground): 38km, 1,000m elevation gain / loss.
  • Thule Super Loop - Leg 2 (Footy Ground - Yaugher - Footy Ground): 26km (64km total), 487m elevation gain / loss
  • Leg 3 (Footy ground - Kaangalang Rd - West Forrest trails - Footy Ground): 34km (98km total), 863m elevation gain / loss

50km Shorty

The 50km Shorty is an easier / shorter version of the 100km course that includes a great mix of single track, climbs and descents. The 2018 course will be the same as in previous years and basically features 2 seperate loops with ridir coming back past the start / finish at the 33km pt.

Riders commence with a sizable hill that spreads the field whilst leading you through some awe inspiring tall timber forest to the top (and bottom) of the famed Red Carpet single track descent. The course then heads over to the popular West Forrest trails with all 50km riders enjoying trails 4, 5 and 6 including the incredible Follow the Dog berm run.

Riders will pass race HQ at the football ground at the 33km pt and then head into the Yaugher trail network for the Super Loop and your next blast around many of the region’s best trails. Then it’s back to the footy ground and into the celebratory finish chute and the end of another phenomenal Shorty 50km. A more detailed description of the 50km course can be found here.

**CLICK HERE (or MAP pictured) to download 50KM MTB COURSE MAP**

Course stats (approx.)

Length: 50km
Total elevation gain / loss: 1410m

  • Leg 1 (Start - Kaanglang Rd - West Forrest trails - Footy Ground): 33km, 1,000m elevation gain / loss.
  • Thule Super Loop - Leg 2 (Footy Ground - Yaugher - Footy Ground): 17km, 410m elevation gain / loss

30km  Rookie

Added to the schedule in 2016, the 30km Rookie is proving to be a popular mid distance race that’s designed for MTB newcomers, women new to mountain biking, and capable junior riders who are not ready to commit to the full 50km or 100km races. This ride is designed equally for adults as well as ‘quick kids’ and follows a great course that is both challenging and achievable for riders who may be tackling their first ever MTB race.

The 30km Rookie also incorperates seperate gender starts with Men starting at 9:20am and Women having their own start at 9:40am to provide a less intimidating experience for all riders. This is part of a range of  initiatives to welcome women to the event as documented on our Odyssey Angels pages.

The Rookie course basically includes 2 seperate loops and comes back past the start / finish at the 12km pt. It kicks off with a long, gradual climb on the 2WD Kaangalang Rd to the Lake Elizabeth turn off where you turn left for a top to bottom race down the popular Red Carpet single track descent that will have you wooping with joy.

Riders return through the Footy Ground at the 12km point where you can see your friends and family before heading into Yaugher’s for the Super Loop with great flowing single track and a blast of fun in the bush before returning to the footy ground to finish. A more detailed description of the 30km course can be found here.

**CLICK HERE (or MAP pictured) to download 30KM COURSE MAP**

Course stats (approx.)

Length: ~29km
Total elevation gain / loss: 700m

  • Leg 1 (Start - Kaanglang Rd - Footy Ground): 12km, 340m elevation gain / loss.
  • Thule Super Loop - Leg 2 (Footy Ground - Yaugher - Footy Ground): 18km, 360m elevation gain / loss


Course videos and index maps

We have produced 5 little video clips on the 30km course to show you what it looks like and to dispel any concerns about the course so you know what you are getting yourself in for. The map to the right provides an index for each clip or watch them all for the whole picture!

Video #1: The start / finish venue at the Forrest Footy Ground.

Video #2: The first 5km of 30km (and 50km) course.

Video #3: The Red Carpet single track descent.

Video #4: The Yaugher single track.

Video #5: The ‘Sandy Climb’ and finish line.


10km Pioneer

The 10km Pioneer is even more appropriate for younger kids, and complete newbies, who want a taste of the MTB action.

The course will predominantly be on 2WD and 4WD roads with a fun section of the Red Carpet single track included for a bit extra fun. The event is targeted primarily for kids aged 7-14yrs who enjoy their riding and want a dose of the racing fun.

**CLICK HERE to download 10KM COURSE MAP**

Handcycles are welcome

Rapid Ascent welcomes off-road handcyclists to participate in the Pioneer, allowing cyclists who have suffered some loss of function in their lower limbs due to disability or impairment to be involved in a major MTB race.

Grommets ride

We love seeing little kids on bikes so this event allows kids aged approx 3yrs – 7yrs to join the action and have fun on their bikes – balance bikes and pedal bikes welcome.

A little off-road loop is set up within the extensive grounds of the Forrest Footy Ground and conduct a number of little activities for kids on their bikes… but it won’t all be about racing or even going fast, this is about having fun on your bike and learning new skills.

Games and activities will include slow riding, bike limbo, relay races, ride the plank and weaving between trees… all in all it should be a whole lot of fun for a whole lot of kids!

MTB: Designated feed zone

Competitors may only receive external support from support crew within the confines of the Forrest Football Ground at the 38km and 64km points in the 100km race, the 33km point on the 50km race and 12km point for the 30km race (approximate distances). This area is defined as any section along the course that is within the playing surface of the Forrest Football Ground.


Passing etiquette - TAKE NOTE!

With a large number of riders a narrow trails there are a few points of common etiquette when it comes to passing a rider that we ask ALL RIDERS to be aware of. (Seriously – being passed by a fast rider is an incredibly intimidating thing for some riders so please be aware of these points).

If you are a faster rider who wants to pass a slower rider:

  • Let the slower rider know you are there and want to pass. Say something like, “Can I go past when there’s a chance...” or even “Track please” if you’re short of breath. Then wait for a wider section of track – don’t just barge on through
  • The slower rider can then say, “OK, go past on the right” or “just up here it’s a bit wider, go there”. But it’s good to acknowledge that you heard them and give direction for when they can go past
  • The faster rider should not and does not expect to go past the moment they catch you, slower riders should stick to their line and call them through when it suits both of you
  • If you are going to pass then make sure you are actually faster, don’t pass if you are pushing 120% effort to get around them and then slow down afterwards

Both riders should leave your ego in the car park and simply communicate that you want to pass and agree a point when it suits to pass. Happy riding! 

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